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Sisodia Under Scanner, AAP's Raghav Chadha Reveals What CBI Will Find in Raid on Deputy CM's Residence

News18 logo News18 19-08-2022 News Desk
Sisodia Under Scanner, AAP's Raghav Chadha Reveals What CBI Will Find in Raid on Deputy CM's Residence © Provided by News18 Sisodia Under Scanner, AAP's Raghav Chadha Reveals What CBI Will Find in Raid on Deputy CM's Residence

Pencils and geometry boxes are all that the CBI will find at the residence of Manish Sisodia, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) dared the Centre on Friday as the agency raided the residence of Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister over the Capital’s excise policy.

Sisodia, who is also Delhi’s education and excise minister, is being investigated by the CBI over a new liquor policy that he implemented for nine months before cancelling it last month.

Upping the ante against the Narendra Modi government, the AAP claimed that the former is “scared” of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s “growing popularity and his governance model”, even as the BJP hit back with corruption allegations.

“They raided Arvind Kejriwal, found four mufflers. And all they will find in Manish Sisodia’s home are pencils, notebooks and geometry boxes,” said AAP leader Raghav Chaddha.

The BJP was planning to jail the Delhi deputy chief minister, he alleged, adding over 100 fake cases had been registered against AAP leaders but they came clean in courts every time.

Defending Sisodia, Kejriwal said: “Many obstacles will be created in our mission. This is not the first raid on Sisodia; there were raids in the past too. There have been raids on many of our ministers and me too. But nothing came out of them and nothing will come out this time as well.”

As a CBI team reached Sisodia’s residence in the morning, Kejriwal took to Twitter to welcome the agency, saying conspiracies will not break him nor deter his resolve to continue to work for providing good education.

The BJP, on the other hand, launched a scathing attack, with Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur saying Sisodia has become “excuse minister”. “The issue is of liquor licenses and the corruption in it. The minister concerned is Manish Sisodia. He reversed the excise policy the day the probe was handed over to the CBI. Why was this step taken? Because, there was corruption in the issuance of liquor licenses,” Thakur alleged.

Delhi Lt Governor VK Saxena last month recommended a CBI probe into alleged irregularities in the implementation of Delhi’s Excise Policy 2021-22. He suspended 11 excise officials in the matter. Sisodia had also demanded a CBI probe into alleged irregularities in the policy. The searches by the CBI covered seven states and union territories.

At a press conference on Friday, Kejriwal hailed Sisodia as the “world’s best education minister” after his name was featured on the front page of the New York Times and claimed the “obstacles” like the CBI raids will not deter them from their mission to make India the “number one country”. “The CBI has been asked from above to harass us,” he alleged.

AAP national spokesperson Sanjay Singh said the alleged irregularities in the formulation of excise policy are just “an excuse” to put the CBI after Sisodia.

“The real issue here is the growing popularity of Arvind Kejriwal and his Delhi model of governance in education and healthcare,” he said.

Days after Delhi Health Minister Satyender Jain, who gave the Delhi model of ‘Mohalla Clinic’ to the world, was jailed by the Enforcement Directorate, the prime minister has put the CBI after Sisodia, the AAP charged. “Preparations are underway to put Sisodia behind bars as the prime minister is not able to sleep at night due to the growing popularity of Kejriwal and his Delhi model of governance in education and healthcare sectors,” Singh charged.

The Delhi BJP targeted the Kejriwal government, alleging it was involved in a liquor “scam” of hundreds of crores of rupees. West Delhi BJP MP Parvesh Verma accused Sisodia of being involved in corruption, and that “two middlemen who used to collect cash from liquor licensees have left the country”.

“The Kejriwal government raised the commission for wholesale licensees from 2 per cent to 12 per cent. Of this, 6 per cent in cash was collected for the AAP government by several people, two of which left the country as soon as a CBI probe was recommended,” Verma alleged at a press conference.

The Congress said the “relentless misuse” of agencies against political rivals erodes their credibility and gives an opportunity even for the corrupt to get away.

“The flip side to relentless misuse of agencies against political rivals is that even legitimate, rightful actions of agencies come under a cloud of suspicion. In the process, the corrupt get away, hiding behind the ‘misuse’ argument and the honest end up paying the price,” Congress’ Pawan Khera tweeted.

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